Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

** And shield thee in the war. Thee of his death " I hoped unknowing."

As the warrior spake, He on the earth the clay-cold carcass laid. With fixed eye the wretched Maiden gazed The life-left tenement: his batter'd arms Were with the night-dews damp; bis brown hair clang Gore-clotted in the wound, and one loose lock Played o'er his cheeks black * paleness. “Gallant youth! She cried, “ I would to God the hour were come When I might meet thee in the bowers of bliss ! “ No Theodore ! the sport of winds and waves, “ Thy body shall not roll adown the stream, The sea-wolf's banquet. Conrade, bear with me "" The corse to Orleans, there in hallowed ground "To rest; the Priest shall say the sacred prayer, “ And hymn the requiem to his parted soul. " So shall not Elinor in bitterness

[ocr errors]

* Lament that no dear friend to her dead child * Paid the last office."

From the earth they lift The mournful burden, and along the plain Pass with slow footsteps to the city gate. The obedient centinel at Conrade's voice Admits the midnight travellers; on they pass,.

Till in the neighbouring Abbey's porch arrived · They rest the lifeless load.

Loud rings the bells The awakened porter tarns the heavy door. To him the Virgin : “Father, from the slain "On yonder reeking field a dear-loved friend " I bring to holy sepulture : chaunt ye " The requiem to his soul : to morrow eve *: Will I return, and in the narrow house " Behold him laid to rest." The father knew The mission'd Maid, and humbly bow'd assent,

Now from the city, o'er the shadowy plain,

wa

Backward they bend their way. From silent thoughts The Maid awakening cried, “ there was a time, “ When thinking on my closing hour of life, " Tho' with resolved mind, some natural fears “ Shook the weak frame; now that the happy hour, “ When my emancipated soul shall burst “ The cumberous fetters of mortality, “ Wishful I contemplate. Conrade! my friend, “ My wounded heart would feel another pang “Should'st thou forsake me !"

- JOAN!" the Chief replied, " Along the weary pilgrimage of life “ Together will we journey, and beguile “ The dreary road, telling with what gay hopes “ We in the morning eyed the pleasant fields • Vision d before; then wish that we had reach'd “ The bower of rest!"

. Thus communing they gain'd The camp, yet hush'd in sleep; there separating, Each in the post allotted, restless waits

The day-break.

Morning came: dim thro' the shade The first rays glimmer; soon the brightening clouds Drink the rich beam, and o'er the landscape spread The dewy light. The soldiers from the earth. Leap up invigorate, and each his food Receives, impatient to renew the war. Dunois his javelin to the Tournelles points, "Soldiers of France ! your English foes are there !" As when a band of hunters, round the den Of some wood-monster, point their spears, elate In hope of conquest and the future feast; When on the hospitable board their spoil Shall smoak, and they, as the rich bowl goes round, Tell to their guests their exploits in the chase ; They with their shouts of exultation make The forest ring ; so elevate of heart, With such loud clamours for the fierce assault The French prepare; nor, guarding now the lists Durst the disheartened English man to man

Meet the close conflict. From the * barbican,
Or from the embattled + wall they their yeugh bows

*Next the bayle was the ditch, foss, graff, or mote: generally where it could be a wet one, and pretty deep. The passage over it was by a draw-bridge, covered by an advance work called a barbican. The barbican was sometimes beyond. the ditch that covered the draw-bridge, and in towns and large fortresses had frequently a ditch and draw-bridge of its own.

Grose.

of The outermost walls enclosing towns or fortresses were commonly perpendicular, or had a very small external talus. They were flanked by semi-circular, polygonal, or square towers, commonly about forty or fifty yards distant from each other. Within were steps to mount the terre-pleine of the walls or rampart, which were always defended by an em. battled or crenellated parapet.

Grose.

The fortifications of the middle-ages differed in this respect from those of the ancients. When the besiegers had gained the summit of the wall the descent on the other side was safe and easy. But “ the ancients did not generally support their. walls on the inside with earth, in the manner of the talus or slope, which made the attacks more dangerous. For though the enemy had gained some footing upon them, he could not assure himself of taking the city. It was necessary to get

« AnteriorContinuar »